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5 Reasons to Try Aerial Yoga

5 Reasons to Try Aerial Yoga

Tuesday, June 23, 2015 - 8:39am

Angie practices Aerial Yoga at the YMCA Anthony Bowen. Click the numbered buttons below to check out more photos of Angie practicing with the hammock.

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Editor's note: This post was originally published on April 27, 2014 and was updated on June 22, 2015.

I’m a huge advocate of movement arts:  Moving not just for the sake of burning calories and losing weight (although beneficial!)  I enjoy movement that integrates physical fitness, emotional fitness, and mental fitness.  Aerial Yoga is for everyone.  It is a Movement Art form that is amazingly accessible and therapeutic, while also challenging, fun and creative.

5 Reasons to Try Aerial Yoga

Because it’s really fun and accessible!

Aerial Yoga will add some spice to your life and cultivate the wonderment of childlike living. I love going upside down and being playful in a yoga practice, but lots of times strength, flexibility, injury, fear, and basic “life wear and tear”  can limit students from accessing inversions or certain yoga poses.  Aerial Yoga uses a hammock made of soft stretchy fabric.  This fabric acts as a magic tool to support inversions, while still allowing students to learn activation of necessary muscles, proper alignment and bone stacking.  The hammock serves as your private guide assisting you into the full benefits of each posture.  I see students who would NEVER imagine going upside-down, yet in an Aerial Yoga class are hanging like they were born to do it.  You do not have to be a super yogi or fitness buff to participate in this practice.  It’s empowering, playful and fun for all!  

Because it can be a cost effective alternative to Physical Therapy

I have been amazed how the practice of Aerial Yoga has endless therapeutic benefits.  We all know that with age and life, the body experiences a lot of wear and tear.  It is our responsibility as the “keepers” of our bodies to deliver the appropriate maintenance.  With an Aerial Yoga class you may:

  • Enjoy deeper, more relaxing stretches (because you do not have to pull or force yourself into the stretch…you can just hang and relax!)  

  • Experience instant spinal decompression.

  • You will increase your joint mobility, loosen your tight muscles and restack your bones to better your posture.

  • Gain incredible core strength, balance, proprioception and re-train your body’s natural movement.

Because you are forced to surrender into relaxation

I have had many moments when I long for “home” but I can’t quite place where that “home” is.  We all know that nostalgic feeling, where you long for a time when everything was right in the world.  Yet reflecting back on the details, you also remember the heartache and pain that was present.  Let me introduce you to a pose in Aerial Yoga called Cocoon.  In Cocoon, you are literally “HELD” by the hammock.  You are suspended off the ground and must trust that this fabric will keep you safe.  There is a gentle rocking that soothes the parasympathetic nervous system, sending signals to your brain, that everything is okay.  This motion causes increased beta waves, which are associated with deep mediation. There are numerous benefits to this relaxed state, such as a reduction of cortisol (the stress hormone), lower blood pressure and a stronger immune system. I admit, I often struggle to just sit and mediate, but with Aerial Yoga, I am constantly brought back to that womb-like state of “home.”

Because you want to do everything else in your life with more ease.

I want to be able to move freely in my body.  Aerial Yoga helps to increase range of motion, mobility, balance and stabilization.  I do a lot of other movements besides yoga.  I want to be a Jiu Jitsu world champion, I want to feel agile when I’m 70, I want to live without physical pain and injury.  Aerial Yoga helps to increase natural movement. A typical class consists of climbing movements, core stabilization, full range of motion, inversions and deep stretching.  Gravity and compression aid in an organic myofascial release, which relaxes contracted muscles, improves blood and lymphatic circulation, and stimulates the “stretch reflex” in muscles.  Aerial Yoga is an intelligent compliment to everything else in your life and will help to achieve long lasting wellness and mobility.

Because who doesn’t want to feel liberated and free?  

I am afraid of a lot of things and I’m also fearless.  Aerial Yoga is a brilliant movement practice to bridge our fears with our capacity to be courageous.

Learning a new form of movement will encourage you to adjust, grow and identify possibilities both physically and mentally. You give a physical rebirth to your brain cells as you release neurotransmitters through proven inversion therapy. You literally surprise your body and mind with something new and fun. When you refresh the systems of your body by inverting, you also trigger the release of endorphins and serotonin (the happy hormones) into your system.

In conclusion, Why not try Aerial Yoga?   Your physical, emotional and mental freedom await you.

Interested in learning to teach VaihAyasa Aerial Yoga?  Angela Meyer will be leading a Level One Aerial Yoga Teacher Training at YMCA Anthony Bowen:  July 24-26 and July 31st-August 2.  For more details about the structure of the training check out:

For further questions or to register for the Aerial Yoga Teacher training:
contact Angela Meyer at

About the Author

Angela currently teaches Yoga, Budokon and Self Defense full time at 202Strong, Flow Yoga Center, Yoga Heights, Vida and George Washington University.  Her vision is to create a community of Everyday Warriors through movement and psychology, who are equipped and motivated to face their Everyday fears and cultivate courage and resilience. As a leader in the Women's Self Defense Movement, she inspires women to be physically strong and safe, while also creating  paradigm shifts in how we see ourselves in the world. She  leads Yoga Teacher Trainings and Budokon Academies throughout Washington DC. She has a Masters of Divinity, is a certified End of Life Care Counselor, studied Buddhist chaplaincy through the New York Zen Center for Contemplative Care, and worked for 12 years at Joseph’s House AIDS hospice. She is a competitive Martial Artist in Muay Thai, Jiu Jitsu and MMA. She also knows every 80s Monster Ballad and loves high alcohol content beer. 

Check out her programs:  

Register at: ~ sessions ~ Women's Self Defense

Follow Angela:


Instagram: @warriorwomanrepublic